A Letter to the Editor in the Sept. 28, 2010, Tomahawk Leader:
Elizabeth Burmaster, the Madison idiot that is now running Nicolet College in Rhinelander, is the one that started all of that stuff with the name of Tomahawk Hatchets. This arrogant reaper of tax dollars doesn't even know that a hatchet is an object and not an American Indian maiden's name. The one thing she does know well is how to blow our property tax dollars. Burmaster organized a retreat for 10 of the college's highest paid officers spending thousands of taxpayer dollars this past July at the exclusive Red Crown Lodge on Trout Lake. Burmaster had the college billed $3,708 for exclusive property use, including single occupancy lodging and recreation, conference, and dining facilities, and for meals and service charges. The retreat was billed as professional development meetings and took place July 21 and 22. The breakdown was $2,280 for the property use and lodging, as well as $810 for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and a $618 service charge. The attendees are some of the highest paid staff members at the college. Burmaster makes $162,035 a year plus $50,673 in benefits for a total compensation package of $212,708. All totaled, the combined compensation package for those 10 Nicolet officials that attended the retreat is $1,503,111. With those kinds of salaries these "public servants" should be able to buy the own meals and given the scale of the facilities at the college there should have been at least one open conference room in open in July. If they needed privacy for their "Professional Development Meetings" shut the bleepin' door.
The Nicolet College Board of Trustees approved a budget containing a 3 percent tax levy increase for the 2010-11 fiscal year. This retreat's costs were billed to the 2011 budget. The 2010-11 budget approved in June totaled $20,680,328 on the tax rolls, or a 3.09 percent increase over last year. That amounts to a $111 tax on a home valued at $100,000. With 9.5% unemployment and 75 more folks being laid off at Harley-Davidson, Tomahawk certainly can't afford $3,700 meetings for these high and mighty educators.
The Nicolet Board should hang their heads in shame for hiring that WEAC, bought and paid for, Madison bureaucrat. Burmaster should resign and head back to "Mad City" or perhaps Bell, California.